I stood overlooking the village. The sun was setting and they were just finished up a pig eradication program. In a short while, we would have services here. Our Team would sing, our leader would preach and sometimes I did a children’s program during his preaching. “Do You want me here?”, I asked. From the time that I was a young child, I had been introduced to missionaries. They had stayed in our home, they had taught us songs in other languages, they had led missions programs in our churches. And from a very young age I had read story after story of real-life missionaries. At that age, I wanted to grow up to be either a missionary or a cowboy!
So here I was years later, a young woman on a short-term mission trip in the country of Haiti. I wanted to hear from God. Is this where You want me? I was willing. But…nothing. No “COME TO THIS COUNTRY AND POUR OUT YOUR LIFE HERE FOR ME”. Just…nothing.
Years later, I learned that God’s silence in this wasn’t a “no” but that God’s idea of going was completely different than mine. My idea had been a glorious call to some foreign mission field were people lived in huts and knew nothing of Christ. God’s idea had been that my life everywhere be a rich testimony of who He is and how He can work in a life. My idea was focused on being a certain place – God’s idea was in how I lived.
God’s call to us to “go” isn’t to become missionaries in far off countries but to be a witness for Him anywhere and everywhere we are. It’s that readiness to speak when God prompts us to speak, whether it be to a neighbor, a coworker, or even someone we meet out shopping. It’s the heart to meet needs in His name, wherever we find needs. It’s grasping God’s passion for saving the lost that are everywhere around us whether that means walking down your road or going to Africa.
Years later, I found myself in the inner city of Atlanta, in the worst neighborhoods of an inner city. Two business executives had walked away from their high paying jobs and began a clown ministry to the children of the inner city. Every Saturday, they walked bullet ridden roads around houses strewn with trash to share the gospel of Jesus with these broken and hurting people. And they had invited me to come along and teach the children’s lesson that day. I was scared. In fact, this was scarier than going to Haiti! I went, knowing that this was God’s heart. I don’t remember any children being saved that day. But I wonder if what was more important to God that I was willing to go, though scared. I was just starting to capture His heart.
“Feet devoted to going” is not just a mission trip to some foreign country; it is intentionally being the hands and feet of Jesus in every place to which He sends us. Where has God sent you lately? To a group of unsaved coworkers? To a mash-up of crazy relatives who work hard making you feel foolish to believe? To the stranger who shies away from any contact, but whose eyes scream loneliness?
“Whom shall I send? And who will go for us? And I said, “Here am I, send me.”